While you wait for more Stephen King madness in It: Chapter Two, the first season of Castle Rock has just been released on DVD and Blu-ray in the United Kingdom.
Grab some friends, some snacks and escape to Castle Rock for a mind-boggling adventure.
The first season of Castle Rock follows Henry Deaver, a Death Row attorney who returns to Castle Rock, Maine, his hometown, after he receives an anonymous phone call from the infamous Shawshank State Penitentiary. The call is about a nameless young man who is found locked in an underground cage that’s located in a long-abandoned cell block beneath the prison. Upon his discovery, the mysterious young man, with a sinister and unnerving presence, whispers Henry’s name. Curious about how and why someone left this boy imprisoned, Henry is drawn into the case and attempts to help him. But there are reasons why “The Kid” was imprisoned. And reasons why he should never be set free.
The thing I loved most about this series is that it is unlike anything I have ever seen. The season kicks off to a strange start, as expected with anything created by Stephen King, but I was never able to guess where it was going to go next. After episode 4, the series just became something entirely different. The first few episodes primarily focused on the main characters and The Kid, but after that the series suddenly became an unpredictable roller-coaster.
Suddenly, we were dealing with dark and twisted supernatural themes. The escalation was completely insane. Now, I recognized very early on that certain events concerning The Kid, Henry and the bizarre nature of Castle Rock were connected but if anyone was able to guess how they were connected, they definitely have the same powers as Danny Torrance.
I was able to binge the entire show in just two sittings. It’s gripping, chilling and very addictive. It has you wanting more after each episode. Not many shows, in my opinion, have the ability to consistently captivate the audience.
The first season consists of 10 jam-packed episodes:
2. Habeas Corpus
3. Local Color
4. The Box
7. The Queen
8. Past Perfect
9. Henry Deaver
As previously mentioned, the show is bonkers. The overall writing and structure of the show is absolutely fantastic. There are so many flawed characters and you spend quite a while trying to work out whether they are good characters or bad, but in Castle Rock it’s never that simple. Additionally, I also found that it was hard to care for the characters to some degree. Not because they were bad characters or poorly written. It’s the fact they all have their secrets so it’s hard to care for these characters when they are all hiding something. It’s no exaggeration, they all have something to hide and The Kid helps bring it all to the surface.
I will mention that my favourite episode is The Queen. It’s an episode that somehow spans across a very short amount of time, yet covers an entire history. Its unique application of flashbacks and the beautiful and harsh portrayal of dementia make for an absolutely riveting watch. The entire episode was brilliantly constructed and it’s definitely a highlight of the series.
The cast is also a primary reason why I loved Castle Rock and why you should watch it. I don’t think “good” and “bad” exists in Castle Rock. These characters really reveal Castle Rocks’ true nature. They are all pushed to their limits eventually and their deterioration is incredibly compelling. While these characters are in no way perfect to begin with, the events change them and you witness that gradual change. Most series would usually depict a character who has hit rock bottom and circumstances eventually transform them for the better. Not Castle Rock. Nope.
As a little Easter Egg hunt, try and spot as many references as you can in the opening credits.
The shocking twist that ultimately shapes Castle Rocks foundation has such a prevalent effect on the series and the characters. In the final 3 episodes I was just left flabbergasted by what was transpiring. It is such a unique show and with a second season on the horizon I am both excited and terrified by what is to come. The unpredictable nature of the show means anything can happen, especially since it’s tied in with Stephen Kings other work. Could events cross over? is Castle Rock responsible for the other bizarre singularities transpiring in Maine? Who knows.
Castle Rock is a wild, exciting, thoughtful and eerie series that will have you glued to your TV after the first episode. You’ll want answers straight away. Who is The Kid? What’s the deal with Henry Deaver? What’s wrong with Castle Rock? All of these questions are slowly unraveled. However, when one question is answered, three more appear. Castle Rock feels like an interactive experience dependent on you guessing and trying to map out the events in your head. You will try, and you will fail.
Welcome to Castle Rock, I hope you enjoy your stay.
Grab your copy of Castle Rock right now to enjoy the entire season plus loads of additional content. Each episode comes with an “Inside the Episode” scoop which gives fans the opportunity to look at how the episode was made. One of the most exciting bonus features is arguably A Clockwork of Horror which investigates the merging of styles of both King and Abrams.
James Lister is a University student in the UK, currently undertaking his Masters degree in Media & Communication. He has a strong passion for everything Marvel, DC, Star Wars, and Anime related.